Letter to U.S. Senate on National Climate Adaptation and Resilience Strategy Act, April 21, 2022
April 21, 2022
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510
I write in support of the National Climate Adaptation and Resilience Strategy Act (S. 3531 and H.R. 6461), a bipartisan bill aimed at addressing the urgent need to assist the communities most vulnerable to climate change, particularly on our nation’s coasts. While mitigation is critical to addressing the long-term consequences of climate change, there is much we can do right now to help those who are already suffering from its impacts.
In his encyclical on ecology, Laudato si’: On Care for Our Common Home, Pope Francis stresses how the communities most impacted by climate change often lack access to the resources needed to adapt to sea level rise and changes in weather patterns (cf. no. 25). The National Climate Adaptation and Resilience Strategy Act will help deliver resources to those in most urgent need. The Act will appoint a Chief Resilience Officer to oversee the development and implementation of a whole-of-government climate adaptation strategy and establish public and private sector working groups to carry it out, thereby putting structures in place to optimize the federal response to climate hazards and natural disasters when and where they occur.
The climate crisis is complex and requires an integral approach that includes both mitigation and adaptation strategies. The National Climate Adaptation and Resilience Strategy Act prioritizes climate adaptation and resilience, reflecting the importance of addressing the social dimensions of the environmental crisis.
Most Reverend Paul S. Coakley
Archbishop of Oklahoma City
Chair, Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development